It’s such an accepted part of our lifestyle, a simple thing, but a gesture, a signal that we are friends and are friendly.
Tourist find it strange to start with but quickly warm to it and often say how, when they return home they start waving to passing traffic, only to get a glare or a look saying,” did you see that fruit loop waving at us”.
As residents we have all done it ourselves when we pick up a rental car in the big city and drive off down the road. And yes we are sometimes guilty of leaving the rental car unlocked with the keys in overnight.
But what’s a Flinders Island Wave?? It’s a very demonstrative body signal. Check it out next time – here are the variations.
You are driving along, one hand on the wheel and you see an oncoming vehicle. The other hand goes on the wheel, so you can get ready to wave.
The busy truck driver lifts one finger. That’s good enough.
You like the person approaching, your right hand leaves the wheel and you wave horizontally with enthusiasm.
You haven’t seen the person for a while; the index finger is extended to point meaning its good to see you.
The truck driver in the older truck with the big steering wheel already has his arms outstretched, so the whole palm is raised in a flat sort of motion.
Two fisherman passing, both hands come off the wheel and the knee holds it in place whilst your two hands show the size of the salmon going up the river.
You had a big night at the pub with someone the night before, that’s a big thumbs up occasion.
You don’t like someone, all that is raised in the last joint of the index finger, hoping they really didn’t see it.
The “see you at the pub gesture”, that is the raised right had in the drinking motion.
Then there is the rapid signalling to one side, meaning STOP, I NEED TO TALK TO YOU!!
And what about when you pass, a sideways wave and then a wave in the mirror to make sure they saw it.
How about when both front seat occupants wave, which is really confusing isn’t it, after all isn’t it the prerogative of the driver to control the selection of wave style for the oncoming vehicle?
I am sure there are more. So, is a wave just a wave? Clearly not, think about it, its one of our most lasing memories for visitor. Maybe they need a guide in the etiquette of waving on Flinders Island. It’s all natural to us.
This article was published on the 17th December 2010 in the Island News.
There was no name published with this article.
I really enjoyed reading this article as it is a way of life on Flinders Island to randomly wave at passers by, but it is a unique way of life in its self.
It just goes to show a simple wave to a passer by is the gesture they will always remember when visiting Flinders Island.